Game 11: Georgetown Hoyas (6-4) vs UNC-Asheville (6-4)
Series: Hoyas lead 1-0, only meeting in 2010-11
Where/When: Verizon Center, Saturday
TV: Fox Sports Local, so check your local listings
This is the Hoyas final game of a seven game home stand that was the longest such stretch of home games in what seems like forever. The good news is that they beat Syracuse from start to finish but the bad news is that lost to Monmouth.
With UNC-Asheville coming to down, Georgetown gets a chance to even its record against the Big South at 1-1. Feels kind of weird just typing a thing like that.
Here's some basic info on UNC-Asheville:
Players to Watch: You'll be hard pressed to get more balanced scoring than this year's Bulldogs. Dwayne Sutton leads four players in scoring with 12.2 points per game. Following Sutton are Kevin Vannatta (11 ppg), Sam Hughes (11 ppg), and Dylan Smith (10.6 ppg).
Only two Bulldogs have hit more than ten 3-pointers, Smith (18) and David Robertson (12).
Last time out: The Bulldogs won their fourth straight game with a 20-point victory over East Tennessee State. Ahmad Thomas led four in double figures with 21 points as UNC-Asheville shot better than 50 percent from the field and 40 percent from deep.
RPI: The Bulldogs have finished with an RPI in the 200's in each of the past three seasons. Recent history has shown that it's possible for UNC-Asheville to finish with a respectable RPI. The Bulldogs did so the last time they made the NCAA Tournament in 2011-12. They finished with a number of 101 after losing to Syracuse in the first round as a 16-seed.
Ok let's talk about the Hoyas.
"On the defensive end we have to start to enjoy it" - JT3 on what the Hoyas need to do after giving up 83 points and 50 percent 3-point shooting to Monmouth
Slumping Sophomores: When you break things down by class, the four sophomores that played major minutes and provided key contributions just one season ago have come up a bit short as a group so far. Let's examine further.
Trey Campbell's shooting numbers are way down and he's missed four games for an undisclosed illness. Last season Campbell had a 3 to 1 assist to turnover ratio but he's stuck at 1 to 1 this season with just six on either side of the ledger. As the only true point guard on the roster, Georgetown needs more out of Campbell.
Paul White has missed half of the Hoyas games with a hip injury and has scored just four points. In stark contrast last season White scored five points...per game. JT3 said on Friday afternoon that his most recent DNP was because the lanky forward is still at about 75 percent.
L.J. Peak has had trouble staying in games this season after fouling out just once his freshman campaign. Peak has already fouled out three times this season. After a summer playing international basketball his 3-point shot is still a work in progress at 24 percent.
Isaac Copeland isn't slumping but it seems as if he's got more potential than what we see every game. His numbers are up across the board and he's scored in double figures eight times already. Copeland had an incredible two days in NYC against Wisconsin and Duke but at times he's been too selfless which was highlighted in a scoreless 0-for-3 performance against UMES.
Numbers to Know:
3: After the Monmouth loss, JT3 has now lost multiple non-conference home games for the third time in 12 seasons. JT3 has never lost three non-conference home games in the same season. He lost to Temple and Illinois in his first season and then to Old Dominion and Oregon in 2006-07. The first time it happened the Hoyas went to the NIT while the second time it happened they went to the Final Four. What's more likely this season?
1: Senior captain Bradley Hayes had a season low 1 point last time out. He had scored in double figures in six of the Hoyas first nine games. The positive way to look at this is that freshman Jessie Govan had his best outing with 14 points thanks to being one of the only Hoyas to shoot well from the line against Monmouth. Govan went five for five.
DSR Chart Climbing: Smith-Rivera needs a point, a board, and an assist to break a few ties on the all-time rankings. DSR is tied with Brandon Bowman with 1548 points, tied with Gerald Riley with 420 rebounds, and tied with Austin Freeman with 274 assists. I'm going to go ahead and assume he breaks all of those stalemates on Saturday against the Bulldogs
Reason to be delusional: You've had too much eggnog and are pretending that the first 10 games never happened. This isn't the worst strategy that I've heard.
Reason to be cynical: Already with losses to both Radford and Monmouth at home, literally anything could happen which includes losing to UNC-Asheville in an energy-less Verizon Center as the Xmas shopping days continue to wind down.
Final Thoughts: I don't know what to think. We need to see better ball movement and we need to see better defense. We also need to see better free throw shooting. Really, we just need better. I'd like to see more of Tre Campbell as there aren't many dress rehearsals left before the BIG EAST journey begins. This team needs better ball movement and Campbell is the lone point guard.